About four weeks ago, I received an invitation from Mark Gillespie of WhiskyCast to help him out with a new project that he is undertaking (more about this in a future post). At the end of my visit, Mark asked me if I’d like a whisky sample to take home. Since the Booze Dancers have had a growing fascination with Japanese whisky, I picked a sample of the Nikka Whisky From The Barrel as my “parting gift”.
Although WhiskyCast recently reported that Nikka has applied to the US government for permission to distribute their whiskies throughout the United States, this process could take a really long time (can you say red tape?). Since patience is not one of my strong suits, I jumped on this golden opportunity to get my hands on
some Nikka (FYI, the easiest way to get your hands on this whisky is through Master of Malt and a few other UK retailers).
Here is a bit more information about this whisky from Nikka:
“Matured malt whisky and grain whisky are blended and then re-casked (a process known as “marriage”) to create a rich harmony of distinctly different whiskies. “From the Barrel” is bottled directly from re-casked barrels of whisky and features almost the same alcohol percentage. At 51.4% alcohol content, this whisky possesses a distinctive personality characterized by solidity, depth of taste and a richly expanding aroma.”
Let’s see if this whisky was worth the wait…
- Color: Deep honey/amber color. Looks quite viscous. Slow moving legs form after giving it a swirl.
- Aroma: Alcohol vapors are quite intense. After letting it open up a bit, I detected toffee, raisins, sherry, cinnamon, honey, and vanilla. Adding a few drops of water brings out a hint of smoke and some floral notes.
- Taste: Has a slightly syrupy mouthfeel. That first taste tingles the tip of your tongue. A bit of sweetness in the beginning, followed by lots of spice and warmth at mid-palate. The finish is quite spicy and lingers for a really long time. A deep inhale brings out some pipe tobacco notes. Leaves your mouth quite dry.
- ABV: 51.4%
In the words of the immortal Limpd, “Me likey whisky!”. Nikka Whisky From The Barrel is a fabulous Japanese whisky that definitely lives up to the hype. Big, bold, and incredibly flavorful, this is a whisky that is meant to be savored. It is also a great value (relatively speaking of course). A 50cl bottle (about 16 ounces) will set you back £25.99 (about $43) at Master of Malt. You owe it to yourself to try this whisky.
Thanks again to Mark Gillespie for this very generous sample.